Don’t Call It a Comeback
Introducing the Cervélo Soloist. Perhaps Cervélo's most famous bike, in the early 2000s, it was the weapon of choice for top World Tour contenders on CSC and the Cervélo Test Team. And now it’s time for a new generation to get acquainted.
Designed to fit in somewhere between the R5 and the S5, the Soloist is something of a jack of all trades race bike that draws on the geometry of the R5 and the aero properties of the S5 to bring something to the table that's competitive in all situations, easy to work on and isn't crazy expensive. Perfect then for the privateer racer that doesn't have their own personal mechanic and a pro racer budget.
The original Soloist was a truly groundbreaking bike, showing the rest of the peloton just what a difference aero tube shapes can make, paving the way for the modern aero road bike. The Soloist then was a genre-defining bike, and the new Soloist doesn't shy away from its aero roots, though Cervélo have designed it for a slightly different market where aerodynamics and straight line speed are not the only considerations.
Who Is It For?
Designed to be race-ready, the new Soloist uses tube-shapes inspired by the S5 to give it incredible aero properties, making it considerably faster than the R5 in terms of drag. At the same time, it uses geometry modelled on the R5, giving it amazing handling and an aggressive race fit. Without all of the aero refinements of the S5, that leaves room for the Soloist to drop a little weight which leaves it a good chunk lighter than their most aero bike, and not quite as light as the featherweight R5. The Soloist then sits right between the S5 and the R5 as an all-around race bike, for the privateer racer that wants to have one bike to crush the local crit series, while also being aero enough to be competitive at a time trial and efficient enough for a road race.
Speaking of geometry, with a 73º head tube and seat tube angles, 57mm of trail and 72mm BB drop in size 56cm, the Soloist has quick and nimble handling. Combined with a longer wheelbase of 994mm again in 56cm and 410mm chainstays across the board this adds some stability to the ride making it a confident descender.
Cervélo have incorporated some new features that mean that the Soloist is both race ready but easy to work on. This includes the T47 threaded BB introduced on the R5-CX for easy bottom bracket removal/installation. The Soloist also features external-internal cabling, this means the cables run through the frame for a clean look and to reduce drag, but run externally under the stem/bars. This makes swapping the bars/stem as simple as on any other externally cabled bike with no cutting hoses or bleeding brakes necessary. Getting the fit on the Soloist dialled is super easy since it's compatible with any standard 1,1/8" stem and handlebar, so you can move your favourite cockpit setup over easily or change your fit on the fly with a different length stem. With tire clearance up to 34c, the Soloist is even ready for some light gravel racing or simply the widest road tires you can find.
Components and Spec
Spec and pricing is where the Soloist will win a lot of fans, since it's priced as competitively as it rides. There are 6 sizes available from 48cm through 61cm in three different colours - Embers, Alpen Glow and Gold Dust. All bikes have hydraulic disc brakes, tubeless compatible wheels and there are both mechanical and electronic groups, plus a frame only option.
Full builds start with the 105 build with R7000 11 speed hydraulic groupset and Alex wheels. Moving up is the Ultegra build with the R8000 hydraulic group and Fulcrum Racing 600 DB wheelset. Moving up is the new 105 Di2 spec with the same Fulcrum wheels or the Rival eTap AXS build running the budget friendly Sram wireless groupset. Topof the range is the Ultegra Di2 build running the 12sp groupset and Reserve 44 wheelset on Zipp ZR1 hubs or the Force eTap AXS build running Sram's wireless 12sp group with the same wheels.
As a well-priced race bike with sensible spec options, quality aero credentials, aggressive geometry and features that make it easy for the home mechanic to work on, the Soloist looks like the new must-have bike for the average racer or aggressive rider looking for one bike to cover all the bases. Available in-store now, head in and try one out or browse the full lineup online today! As always, feel free to contact us if you have any questions or would like to discuss a new bike or custom build with a friendly human member of staff!